YAG lasers are also known as flash lamp or lamp-pumped lasers, as they utilize a lamp (bulb) as
a pumping mechanism and a YAG crystal as the gain medium.
YAG lasers are also known as flash lamp or lamp-pumped lasers, as they utilize a lamp (bulb) as a pumping mechanism and a YAG crystal as the gain medium. At TYKMA Electrox, we offer a wide variety of laser marking equipment types for companies, and throughout the years, that has included YAG laser marking systems. As technology has advanced, though, we’ve moved on to more advanced units such as MOPA fiber laser marking systems.
And while you may be initially searching for a YAG laser now, what you’ll find is that a fiber laser system offers greater functionality and more benefits. With the advances in the industry, YAG technology has become outdated, and the best way to improve your facility’s marking capabilities is by investing in fiber lasers rather than YAG lasers.
What Are the Differences Between YAG Lasers and Fiber Lasers?
To learn why fiber laser engravers are a better option for your company than YAG laser engravers, it’s best to first understand the differences between these technologies.
YAG lasers are also known as flash lamp or lamp-pumped lasers, as they utilize a lamp (bulb) as a pumping mechanism and a YAG crystal as the gain medium. Both reside in an optical resonator, typically a gold-plated cavity, which provides reflection of the light and helps with the process of creating the laser light.
Though customers still utilize YAG lasers in manufacturing, this laser design is becoming obsolete because the bulbs have a short lifespan and require frequent replacement. They are inefficient and create a large amount of heat, which then require water-cooling measures.
These problems make the flash lamp/YAG laser very maintenance intensive. For these reasons, investing in a YAG laser engraving machine is often a poor choice when it comes to the long-term prospects for a company.
Unlike YAG lasers, fiber lasers utilize semiconductor diodes as the pumping mechanism and a doped fiber optic cable as the gain medium. In a fiber laser, the doped fiber optic serves as the resonator. Fiber lasers are the most reliable laser technology available today for material processing applications, offering the best combination of reliability and marking capability.
The many pros of a fiber laser include:
- Highest beam quality
- Air cooled with high ambient air temperature operating capabilities
- Very efficient with low power consumption
- Longest diode life (Up to 100,000 hours)
- Extended warranties over other technologies (TYKMA Electrox 3-year warranty)
- MOPA design of TYKMA Electrox fibers allows for maximum application flexibility
- High peak power and long pulse durations are good for high-speed aggressive marking and deep engraving applications
- Easy to integrate and service
- Fiber lasers are typically available in two different configurations in the laser marking industry: Q-Switched or MOPA. Q-Switched fiber lasers are reliable and powerful, but have limited flexibility compared to MOPA laser engines. TYKMA Electrox offers MOPA-based fiber lasers in all of its standard products.